Learn about how migration has shaped cities around the world and the particular issues that migrants face in urban contexts

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Discover the fundamental links between migration and cities

Migration has always played a fundamental role in urban development. Without some form of inward migration – be it international or internal – cities would not develop or grow.

On this course you will explore the relationship between migration and cities both across history and in the world today. For example, you’ll learn about the influence of migration on the rise of modern, industrial cities in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. You will also look at a range of contemporary issues at the urban scale, such as employment, settlement, public space and local policy.

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Skip to 0 minutes and 13 seconds People move between countries, or even within a country, for a variety of reasons. But did you know that it is cities that attract the majority of migrants? Yes. A close relationship exists between human mobility and urban growth. And this is what we will investigate during this course. We will look at different types of migration and how they change city landscapes physically, economically, socially, and of course culturally. Think of major metropolises, such as New York and Buenos Aires, that would not exist today had they not been the destination of massive migrant flows. And of industrial cities in North America and Western Europe that depended heavily on migrant workers.

Skip to 1 minute and 2 seconds We will look at how migrants have contributed to the economic innovation and growth of cities around the world. For example, by creating new businesses and establishing trade links with their countries of origin. We will consider how migrant settlement patterns and use of public space shape a city and are perceived by its citizens. We will also analyse some of the problems that have arisen in cities as a result of migration, such as social integration. And we will reflect on the possibilities and limits of urban policies in addressing such challenges. Follow our course and you will access stimulating expert interviews, interesting articles, and instructive case studies. Join the discussions and test your learning.

What topics will you cover?

  • The different types of migration towards cities
  • The role of migration on urban development over history
  • Migrant labour in contemporary cities
  • Settlement and residential distribution of migrants in cities
  • Migration and urban public space
  • Problems and conflicts arising from migration to cities
  • Migration governance at the urban scale
  • Migration and cultural heritage in cities
  • Transnational urban networks among migrant groups

When would you like to start?

Start straight away and join a global classroom of learners. If the course hasn’t started yet you’ll see the future date listed below.

Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Explore current debates on how migration has shaped cities historically
  • Investigate key issues regarding migrants in cities today
  • Assess the possibilities and limits of local policy in facilitating the integration of migrants in cities
  • Reflect on the ways in which migrants' networks between different cities around the world encourage a rethinking of international migration

Who is the course for?

This course is for anyone interested in learning about migration and cities, you don’t need any past experience.

Who will you learn with?

Nick Dines is research fellow at the European University Institute, Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies.

Anna Triandafyllidou is Canada Excellence Research Chair in Migration and Integration at Ryerson University, Toronto, Canada.

Who developed the course?

European University Institute (EUI)

We are the European University Institute (EUI), the leading institute in Europe dedicated to social sciences and humanities. Founded in 1972 by the six original members of the then European Communities, the EUI has earned a reputation as a transnational hub of research and higher learning.

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  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Digital certificate when you're eligible

Buy this course

$59

One-off payment

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  • Access to this course
  • Learn at your own pace
  • Discuss your learning in comments
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